Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Stop Fuzzy Math in Seattle

The Seattle School Board is voting on Wednesday to introduce a completely discredited and mandatory fuzzy math curriculum called the "Discovery Series" city wide. Please act now to stop them. Send an email to each board member listed below and let them know how you feel. If you don't know what to write, simply state: "No fuzzy math" or something similar in the subject, and "Please support our kids right to compete on the world technology stage by choosing real math and not fuzzy math. Please choose the Prentice Hall text books." or something similar in the body along with which school your child is in if you have a child.

Board members who supported real math recently but are under tremendous pressure to reverse are listed below. Let them know you are with them:
  • Michael DeBell: michael.debell@seattleschools.org
  • Harium Martin-Morris: harium.martin-morris@seattleschools.org
  • Mary Bass: mary.bass@seattleschools.org
Board members who let our kids down and voted for fuzzy math and the onslaught of mediocrity are shown below. Let them know you disapprove:
  • Sherry Carr: sherry.carr@seattleschools.org
  • Peter Maier: peter.maier@seattleschools.org
  • Steve Sundquist: steve.sundquist@seattleschools.org
Absent from the last vote, but said to be in favor of the fuzzy “Discovery” books is:
  • Cheryl Chow: cheryl.chow@seattleschools.org
Please spread the word to everyone you know in Seattle! Feel free to email this message, copy it, etc.

Here's a nice video of board member DeBell discussing in detail why the fuzzy math text is a bad idea.

And HERE the Seattle Times discusses why the fuzzy texts are a bad idea.

Finally, some additional talking points to include in your emails or use as a launch point into your own investigations. Please add in your own experience with district math programs at any grade level.
  • Prentice-Hall books are solid, well-organized, and mathematically sound computational algorithms and formulas are clearly stated and well motivated by examples and hands-on activities. These materials are family and student friendly.
  • Discovering Algebra and Discovering Advanced Algebra (Key Curriculum Press) have too much verbiage, too little in the way of clearly stated mathematical principles. Definitions, computational algorithms, and formulas are vaguely stated if they are stated at all. The program does not include enough practice for mastery.
  • Local and national mathematicians have expressed their written concerns about the soundness of these programs.
  • Our kids should not be subject to this ongoing failed experiment.

1 comment:

JoMama said...

What is wrong with these people? Why would they do this to kids? Mathematics is sooooo incredibly important, you must be white-hot angry. Thanks Deep for urging people to act rather than just complain!

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